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| colspan="4" width="450px" | Progression of coronary atherosclerosis can be gradual (bottom) or can lead to plaque rupture with acute occlusion of a coronary vessel due to clot formation
 
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==== ''Tobacco smoking'' ====
 
==== ''Tobacco smoking'' ====
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Tobacco use is known to increase the risk of atherosclerosis and ischemic heart disease based on numerous studies. For example, INTERHEART study shows that smoking is responsible for 36% of the population-attributable risk of a first MI. Other studies showed that smoking is an independent major risk factor for coronary heart disease, cerebrovascular disease and total atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease.  The Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study measured the direct effect of smoking on the development of atherosclerosis. They measured intima-medial thickness of the carotid artery of 10,914 patients for three years with ultrasound. Their result showed that current smokers had a 50% increased progression of atherosclerosis in comparison to nonsmokers during the study period. Also patients with environmental tobacco smoke exposure (passive smokers) had 20% higher rate of atherosclerotic progress versus patients without environmental smoke exposure.<br />
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Tobacco use, including environmental smoking exposure, is known to increase the risk of atherosclerosis and ischemic heart disease based on numerous studies. For example, INTERHEART study shows that smoking is responsible for 36% of the population-attributable risk of a first MI. Other studies showed that smoking is an independent major risk factor for coronary heart disease, cerebrovascular disease and total atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease.  The Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study measured the direct effect of smoking on the development of atherosclerosis. They measured intima-medial thickness of the carotid artery of 10,914 patients for three years with ultrasound. Their result showed that current smokers had a 50% increased progression of atherosclerosis in comparison to nonsmokers during the study period. Also patients with environmental tobacco smoke exposure (passive smokers) had 20% higher rate of atherosclerotic progress versus patients without environmental smoke exposure.<br />
 
   
 
   
 
Tobacco smoking can lead to many mechanisms that contribute to atherosclerosis. Smoking also leads to increased LDL levels, decreased HDL levels in blood and elevated insulin resistance. In addition it enhances oxidative modification of LDL by releasing free radicals and reduces generation of nitric oxide. This can promote endothelial dysfunction and thus lead to impairment of vasodilatation of coronary arteries and reduction of coronary flow reserve even in passive smokers. Tobacco smoking inappropriately stimulates sympathetic nervous system, increasing heart rate, blood pressure and perhaps coronary vasoconstriction. Smoking promotes a prothrombotic environment through inhibition of endothelial release of tissue plasminogen activator, elevation of fibrinogen concentration in blood, enhancement of platelet activity (possibility related to sympathetic activation) and  enhanced expression of tissue factor. Smoking can even damage the vessel wall and ultimately cause a decrease in the elasticity of the artery, enhancing the stiffness of vessel wall. Smoking has been associated with increased C-reactive protein and fibrinogen, suggesting a correlation with inflammatory response, which is an important part of atherogenesis. There have also been findings that show higher expression of leukocyte adhesion molecules among smokers than nonsmokers. Smoking may additionally induce tissue hypoxia through displacement of oxygen with carbon monoxide in hemoglobin. <br />
 
Tobacco smoking can lead to many mechanisms that contribute to atherosclerosis. Smoking also leads to increased LDL levels, decreased HDL levels in blood and elevated insulin resistance. In addition it enhances oxidative modification of LDL by releasing free radicals and reduces generation of nitric oxide. This can promote endothelial dysfunction and thus lead to impairment of vasodilatation of coronary arteries and reduction of coronary flow reserve even in passive smokers. Tobacco smoking inappropriately stimulates sympathetic nervous system, increasing heart rate, blood pressure and perhaps coronary vasoconstriction. Smoking promotes a prothrombotic environment through inhibition of endothelial release of tissue plasminogen activator, elevation of fibrinogen concentration in blood, enhancement of platelet activity (possibility related to sympathetic activation) and  enhanced expression of tissue factor. Smoking can even damage the vessel wall and ultimately cause a decrease in the elasticity of the artery, enhancing the stiffness of vessel wall. Smoking has been associated with increased C-reactive protein and fibrinogen, suggesting a correlation with inflammatory response, which is an important part of atherogenesis. There have also been findings that show higher expression of leukocyte adhesion molecules among smokers than nonsmokers. Smoking may additionally induce tissue hypoxia through displacement of oxygen with carbon monoxide in hemoglobin. <br />
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==== ''Diet'' ====
 
==== ''Diet'' ====
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Several studies suggest that diet, more specifically intake of fruit and vegetable can reduce the risk of coronary heart disease and stroke. In the INTERHEART study, lack of daily consumption of fruits and vegetables was responsible for 14% of the population-attributable risk of a first MI. Another meta-analysis study showed that additional daily portion of fruit reduced the risk of stroke by 11%, but no such effect was found with vegetable consumptionAnother form of diet such as high fiber consumption can also relatively reduce the risk of coronary heart disease and stroke compared to low fiber consumption. In addition, the Hale project has shown that Mediterranean-styled diet as primary prevention for CVD among elderly aged 70-90 without CVD significantly reduces all-cause, coronary heart disease and CVD mortality.<br />
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A healthy diet reduces CVD risk. In general, when following the rules for a healthy diet, no dietary supplements are neededN-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) consumption mainly from oily fish, is potentially associated with beneficial effects on cardiac risk factors, notably reduction in triglycerides but not all randomized, controlled trials have shown reductions in CV events Thus current recommendations are to increase PUFA intake through fish consumption, rather than from supplements. Recently, the largest study ever conducted with a so-called ‘Mediterranean’ diet, supplemented with extra-virgin olive oil or nuts, reduced the incidence of major cardiovascular events in patients at high risk of CV events but without prior CV disease.<cite>Estruch</cite>
    
==== ''Alcohol consumption'' ====
 
==== ''Alcohol consumption'' ====
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#Theorell Theorell, T., Lind, E., Floderus, B. “The relationship of disturbing life-changes and emotions to the development of myocardial infarction and other serious diseases.” Int J Epidemiol 1975; 4:281.
 
#Theorell Theorell, T., Lind, E., Floderus, B. “The relationship of disturbing life-changes and emotions to the development of myocardial infarction and other serious diseases.” Int J Epidemiol 1975; 4:281.
 
#Vita Vita J.A., Keaney J.F. Jr. “Endothelial function: a barometer for cardiovascular risk? Circulation” 2002; 106:640.
 
#Vita Vita J.A., Keaney J.F. Jr. “Endothelial function: a barometer for cardiovascular risk? Circulation” 2002; 106:640.
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#Estruch pmid=23944307
 
</biblio>
 
</biblio>

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